The shocking details are only now beginning to emerge but the ring leaders who targetted the Muslim minority population have still not been arrested.

The terrified Muslims villagers from Rajasthan's Jhalawar district were targetted when Hindutva extremists destroyed a village mosque with explosives.

The local Imam fled in terror after the gang threatened to decapitate him with a ceremonial sword.

A few miles outside Iklera, local journalists saw the sign "Ideal Hindu village welcomes you" proudly highlighting that Muslims had moved out. Saffron Bajrang Dal flags have also been raised over "Hindu houses."

The minority Muslim community constitutes about 20% of the population in Iklera and in the past six months many have written letters to the administration about rising insecurity in the area.

Masterminds not arrested

Most people took refuge with relatives in other districts, some fled to Madhya Pradesh but the majority are still too afraid to return.

The attacks continued over four consecutive days, according to the New York-based Indian Muslim Council on Friday who released the full details to Aljazeera.net.

Vice President Ahmad Rashid said that despite the arrest and release of nearly 30 people in connection with attacks – police have still not detained alleged masterminds Kanwarlal Meena and Devi Lal.

“Meena still denies any wrong doing and has not been arrested despite a number of residents identifying him in seven different registered statements after the attacks,” Rashid told Aljazeera.net.

But Meena told a local journalist: "Angry people and not activists caused 10% of the damage. The minority [Muslim]community damaged their own houses and vehicles to claim compensation."

Rashid added that the Gehunkheri mosque had now been rebuilt and that another one, in Ratanpura village, was almost fully repaired.

Bajrang Dal extremists

"Angry people and not activists caused 10% of the damage. The minority [Muslim] community damaged their own houses and vehicles to claim compensation"

Kanwarlal Meena,
alleged mastermind behind attacks 

However, local Muslims complained that the attacks started after 14 Bajrang Dal members were detained by police at Iklera police station on 16 September.

Bajrang Dal are a section of the much-feared Hundutva extremists.

They were rounded up for travelling without tickets to Jhalawar to participate in what they called a Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) political rally.

The next morning, Hafidh Safwan Alam, the Imam of the Gehunkheri mosque was stopped by a group of armed men.

"They put a sword on my neck and forced me to take off my cap. Somehow I managed to escape into the nearby maize field. I later heard a blast from the mosque. When I returned I saw the rubble of the mosque and its charred remains," said Hafidh to the Hindustan Times.

Raiding homes

Twelve families fled their homes in panic immediately and sought protection at the Iklera police station 15km away – a move that allowed the group to ransack homes and set fire to at least four buildings and a sawmill.

One Gehunkheri villager, Siraj Ansari, said: ”They burnt my saw mill and tractor and let loose cattle and destroyed crops.” Four other villages suffered similar attacks over the next two days, the police confirmed.

The administration is trying to bring back the families to Gehunkheri, Misroli, Kokhera, Arania, and Ratanpura, but the local justice S N Jairath confirmed that people had still not returned.
 
A few miles outside Iklera, local journalists saw the sign "Ideal Hindu village welcomes you" proudly highlighting that Muslims had moved out. Saffron Bajrang Dal flags have also been raised over "Hindu houses."

The minority Muslim community constitutes about 20 per cent of the population in Iklera and in the past six months many have written letters to the administration about rising insecurity in the area.